Property is now the preferred asset class for investors in the UAE, even more so than gold, according to the latest Friends Provident International (FPI) Investor Attitudes report.
However, investors in the country also showed improved sentiment for gold, equities and bonds, cash and money and currency markets, found the survey.
Only collectibles fell in popularity since the last edition of the report, released in Q4 2012, said FPI.
Matthew Waterfield, FPI’s general manager, Middle East and Africa said: “It is interesting – although not entirely surprising – to see the much improved preference for investing in property, which has been building over the last few editions of the report. Sentiment towards property investment is a fairly reliable barometer of the level of confidence in the local investment market.”
Overall, the report found that UAE investors are now more confident in their local investment market than their counterparts in Hong Kong and Singapore.
The Friends Investor Attitudes index for the UAE rose 11 points and now stands at 28, up from 17 points in the last edition, while the indices for Hong Kong and Singapore stand at 27 and 25 respectively.
While 76 per cent of the UAE respondents believe the investment market has improved over the last six months, the same number believe that markets will continue to improve over the next six months.
Property markets in the UAE, specifically in Dubai, have been dramatically recovering over the last few months. A recent study by consultancy Jones Lang LaSalle stated that residential sales prices in the city rose 18 per cent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2013.
New real estate projects launched in the city are completely sold-out, with several local and international investors snapping up units, say developers.